Saturday, July 31, 2010

Swimming Peanut

Evelyn never ceases to amaze us when it comes to swimming. As of today, Evelyn can swim the front crawl stroke the entire length of the pool (without stopping), and she can dive for sunken rings in the 5-foot-deep water. She just keeps adding on to her list of swimming skills.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Silly Bandz

Yes, we have joined the silly bandz craze in our house. Evelyn had seen them at school (before they were banned). Then a friend gave Evelyn about a dozen silly bandz. Next thing we knew, we had a minor explosion of silly bandz in our house, bringing the total number to about 80. Thankfully, the girls usually share and take turns wearing different silly bandz. Well, we certainly have enough silly bandz that they should be able to share! But, whenever the girls can't play nice, Mommy gets to wear them.

Saturday, July 24, 2010


It was predicted to be so hot today that we headed to the pool in the morning. By the time the pool opened at 10:00, the temperature was already 90 degrees!

Here are the girls doing "Superman" - they stand on a ledge, with their arms up, and then they fall into the water. (Either Troy or I catch Julia.)
Julia frequently asks to swim. That means she wants help floating on her tummy while she kicks her legs. Go, baby, go!

A quick shot of a be-goggled Evelyn, hanging out in the 3 1/2-foot-deep water.
And here's Evelyn, taking a breath while doing the front crawl stroke. Just like last summer, she has come a long way with her swimming abilities over the summer, and we still have a month to go.
See why we decided to swim in the morning? This picture almost says it all. It was also very humid today, which put the heat index over 110 degrees.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Julia's First Hair Cut

Julia didn't necessarily need a hair cut because her hair was getting too long. She needed a trim to help with the uneven lengths of baby hair that had a way of getting away from her. I wasn't sure how she would handle the whole experience . . .
It turns out she did great! Julia didn't fuss or cry once, which is TONS better than how Evelyn's first hair cut went.

I know this "after" picture doesn't look much different than the "before" picture, but the back of her hair looks better, having been evened out. And it's a relief to know that she doesn't hate getting hair cuts. Whew!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Final Game at Rosenblatt

I started going to baseball games at Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha back in the '70s, when I was a little tyke. I attribute my love of baseball to seeing my first games at Rosenblatt. I have fond memories of attending Omaha Royals games with my parents, and Troy and I went to several College World Series games there. This is the final season Rosenblatt will be around, and I wanted to take advantage of seeing one last game at that beautiful stadium.

Even though the Royals, a minor-league professional baseball team, were out of town, there was an exhibition game at Rosenblatt tonight. We girls headed over there with my parents for the 7:00 game, and we all enjoyed the game. All the pictures below are self-explanatory, but I do want to point out Julia double-fisting bites of funnel cake.

Lunch at the Omaha Press Club

We girls dined atop the First National Bank of Omaha building for lunch today at the Omaha Press Club. It seems to be a summer tradition for us to be invited to eat here, guests of one of Troy's mom's friends. Check out the view below - you can see the Qwest Center, the Missouri River and the pedestrian bridge that spans the river. Julia liked looking at the cars and buses.

The crowd at lunch-time usually consists of businessmen in suits and ties, so I always have the highest expectations for the girls' table manners when we eat here. Today one of Omaha's former mayors, Hal Daub, was a the table right next to us. You can bet I made sure the girls were on their best behavior all throughout the meal, and they did a great job. After lunch, while we were in the lobby waiting for the elevator, Julia tried going in the elevator with Mayor Hal Daub. In order to help distract her, he started talking in a Donald Duck voice, which also got Evelyn's attention. What a fun way to end the afternoon!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Diving Board

While frequenting the pools in Nebraska, Evelyn has been getting up the nerve to jump off the diving board. Sunday and Monday she confidently jumped from the side of the pool into 10-foot-deep water, which is just one step away from going off the board. She is a really good swimmer, and she can tread water, so all signs pointed to Evelyn being ready to take the plunge.

This afternoon we headed over to a city pool where we know a couple of the lifeguards, so one of them was able to help catch Evelyn. The first two times Evelyn went off the board today, I pushed her. There was no other way to get her to go off, and thankfully she didn't flip out. The next four or five times Evelyn jumped off on her own, and the lifeguard didn't have to catch her, she only helped steer her toward the ladder.

Once Evelyn jumped off the diving board completely on her own, there was no turning back. She jumped off the diving board for 45 minutes straight! I don't usually take my camera to the pool, but I wish I would have had it with me today to capture my brave little Peanut conquering the diving board!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Little Golfers

This evening we teed off from the third tee box at the Fontenelle Hills golf course. This was Julia's first time on the golf course, and she had a grand ol' time:
Evelyn is a veteran when it comes to this course, playing for the fourth time on this hole. Do you think her hickory iron will help get the ball alllllll the way to the green?

Actually, Evelyn did manage to get her ball to the green solely by hitting it with her clubs - that's a first for her. Evelyn's putting skills have also improved since last summer, and she really enjoyed practicing her putts over and over.
Julia, on the other hand, preferred the two-year-old strategy: forget the clubs and drop the ball in the cup with your hands.
The sun was setting at the end of our golf outing, signaling the deer to come out. If you look closely, you can see two fawns and two does on the hillside. Julia kept waving her driver at them, saying, "Good night, deer!"

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Gone Fishing

Evelyn went fishing with Uncle Matt this morning at Hansen Lake, near Plattsmouth, Nebraska. When I asked Evelyn how many fish she caught, she couldn't tell me. She caught too many fish to remember the number! But she did remember the four different kinds of fish she caught - blue gill (pictured below), catfish, drum and bass. Not too shabby for an hour and a half of fishing!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Evelyn's Hair Donation

Today was the day! Evelyn has been wanting to donate her hair for almost a year, and it was finally long enough to do so. We headed over to John Edwards' Salon for the appointment with Evelyn's stylist. We decided to go with Pantene Beautiful Lengths for the hair donation, which requires hair to be at least eight inches long.

First, Evelyn's hair was braided into two sections.Then, each braided pigtail was cut.
Evelyn couldn't resist swishing her hair after nine inches were cut off.

Finally, Evelyn's stylist washed her hair, evened out the back and blended the (almost grown-out) bangs. Voila! It's a new Evelyn!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Old Stomping Grounds

This afternoon, on our drive from Holdrege to Bellevue, we stopped in Lincoln. Our main destination was the Nebraska Bookstore so we could stock up on some Husker shirts. We had fun in the store, letting the girls try on different hats. Here's Julia with a monster cowboy hat - when she put it on, it fell right over her head and landed on her shoulders.
Evelyn looks all decked out and ready for a Husker football game with a corn head and foamy finger. We didn't buy any of these humungous souvenirs, but it was fun to play.

Since we were right there at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, we took a walk around the main campus. The best photo-op was in front of Memorial Stadium, where Troy and I saw many a football game during our college years.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Farm Fun

We went out to Aunt Leann's and Uncle Tim's farm this evening, and the girls had SO much fun. There are eight-week-old kittens out there, and Evelyn was completely smitten by them. The only time she wasn't playing with the kittens was when we forced her to come inside to eat supper. Would you believe she passed up chocolate cake so she could have more time to play with the kittens?!
Whereas Evelyn was very gentle when handling the kittens, Julia was quite the opposite. Shortly after I took this picture, Julia cuddled the gray kitten to her chest and then dropped it on the ground - ouch!

We then encouraged Julia to play with the kittens in the grass, where it wouldn't hurt as much if she dropped them.
As the sun was beginning to set, Uncle Tim asked Evelyn if she wanted to collect eggs with him. She had no problem getting eggs from the empty nests, but Uncle Tim had to get any eggs that were hiding under chickens. Check out the colors of the eggs - most are brown, but some are light green. That's the color of eggs a certain chicken lays (I can't remember the name of the breed). Wild!
Ah, yes, but back to the kittens. Before posing with her collected eggs, Evelyn had to grab a kitten.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Zoo Time!

If you have ever been to Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo, you know how enormous it is. We girls headed to the zoo this morning and got there right when it opened at 9:00. We knew we could only stay until lunch, which allowed us three hours. Evelyn's priorities were the Desert Dome and the cats. Since those two exhibits are fairly close to each other, Evelyn's agenda was very do-able.

We trekked through the Desert Dome first, checking out all the critters and creatures. Here's a picture of Julia, trying to be brave to get a close-up view of a bird.
Next, we headed over to the cats. Evelyn loved looking at the tigers, lions, fishing cats, jaguars and pumas. Big or small, wild or tame, cats are Evelyn's favorite animals.

The polar bear was swimming 'round and 'round his private pool, hamming it up for the crowd. I just love how the expression on his face is like, "Hey, what's up?"
After seeing the Desert Dome, the cats and the bears, we took a train ride. This always puts Julia in a mellow mood, and today was no different. She's just chillin', snacking on Goldfish and watching the scenery go by. After the train ride, it was time to go . . . but I'm sure we'll be back one more time before heading home to Maryland.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Guess Where . . . ?

Guess where Evelyn lost her second tooth? At the Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C. Last night, as we were waiting to board our plane to Nebraska, the girls were snacking on a muffin. Evelyn stopped for a moment to ask me if her tooth was bleeding. I confirmed that yes, her tooth was bleeding. The next thing I knew, Evelyn bent her head over her hand and out fell her tooth! She was so excited - she kept saying, "I've never lost my tooth in an airport before!"

Monday, July 5, 2010

Lake House 4th of July

This year we headed to our friends' lake house near Solomons, Maryland, for the 4th of July. Solomons is on the west side of the Chesapeake Bay, and the lake house was just a 5-minute canoe ride (or 10-minute walk) to the beach.

Evelyn went on two canoe rides, and she was fortunate to see bald eagles soaring along the coastline both times. She had a lot of fun at the beach . . . until a jellyfish stung her. Aside from the nasty stinging that lasted several minutes, she was fine.
Julia headed over to the beach after her nap, but she was too drowsy for any swimming. She just wanted to check out the water while staying on land.

Here's our Peanut, ready to paddle back to the lake house from the beach.
After eating supper, we lit some small fireworks and sparklers in the driveway. Sparklers always bring smiles to kids' faces, don't they?This picture sums up Julia's opinion of fireworks this year: